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National Geographic and the National Park Service have partnered to conduct a BioBlitz in a different national park each year during the decade leading up to the NPS Centennial in 2016. For 24 hours, volunteer scientists, families, students, teachers, and other community members try to find and identify as many... more >>
The Golden Gate National Recreation Area is a great place to see birds. You can see the largest migration of raptors in western North America in the Marin Headlands, find spotted owls in Muir Woods, or see shorebirds at Lands End (to name just a few).
Arguably, the quintessential part of... more >>
On a misty day during a walk through Muir Woods, I saw a small brown and orange salamander. It was a brief look, and I am a poor herpetologist, but I suspect it was an Ensatina—or Ensatina eschsholtzii to those with a systematics bent—that occurs in habitats from coniferous forests... more >>
On a recent birding trip to Point Reyes, we ran across dozens of song sparrows—small, brown and white birds with a penchant for singing on the tops of bushes and fences. My friend, a decently experienced bird watcher, had trouble identifying them. When told they were song sparrows she said,... more >>
According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the downy woodpecker (Picoides pubescens) is a species known to participate in inter-species collaboration. The downy woodpecker occupies a large range throughout North America, and, according to the Sequoia Audubon Society, it has been sighted at Mori Point here in the Golden Gate... more >>
Maybe you grew up in Southern California and wonder if you’ve ever truly experienced “autumn.” Palm tree fronds don’t change colors, after all. The truth is that there is a lot more to seasonal change than a palette shift. And although we may not have a white holiday approaching, there... more >>
Little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus, which in Greek means “mouse ear” and “light fleeing”) inhabit Canada, Mexico, and the United States. They prefer forested areas, but can easily adapt to tall shrub and urban environments. They are extremely temperature tolerant and can survive cold 40 degree nights and hot 120... more >>
Life is not all river otters and coyote pups. Some organisms in these national parks simply give us the heebie-jeebies—justifiably or not. With Halloween a few days away, here’s our list of the scariest and grossest creatures. For the squeamish, turn away. For the stout-hearted, read on—if you dare.
Find something... more >>
Throughout the 1980s–90s, the GGRO Peak Week—that is, the seven-day stretch that contained the highest hawk count days of the year—truly happened in a week (or roughly a week). In those not-so-ancient times, we recorded highest count days as early as September 15 (569 sightings in 1987) and as late... more >>
With cute baby animals out and about, now’s a great time to explore your Golden National Parks. View this slideshow of some of the parks’ budding young stars, and then gather up your own little ones for an “awww”-some park adventure.
You can also view more photos of our parks (and... more >>